War Diary October 9th to 15th, 1939

Monday 9th October

  • The Admiralty announced that on the previous afternoon a German naval squadron had been sighted by patrol aircraft south west of Norway.  Owing to oncoming darkness the enemy escaped.  There were repeated actions in the North Sea between German aircraft and British warships. No British ship was damaged.  Four British planes, flying in pairs, carried out daylight reconnaissance flights the whole way along the frontier from France to the North Sea.  The first pair encountered bad weather and were assailed by anti-aircraft fire from Koblenz and Sietberg, but returned home in safety.  The second pair were able to take valuable photos.  Paris reported enemy patrol activity on either side of the valley of the Lower Nied and to the south of Saarbrucken.
  • For the first time Germans made use of loud speakers to put across propaganda from their front lines. Dr Juho Paasikivi, Finnish Minister in Stockholm, left Helsinki for Moscow.
  • Sweden decreed that men who would normally leave the army next Sunday should stay with their Colours.
  • Count Wailaw-Grzybowski, Polish Ambassador to Moscow, and his staff left Moscow.
  • Soviet troops who are to occupy naval and air bases began marching to Estonia.
  • First contingent of the re-formed Czechoslovakian army left Paris for the Western Front.

Tuesday 10th October

  • M. Daladier replied to Hitler’s ‘Peace’ proposals in a broadcast, and stated that France would continue to fight for a definite guarantee of security in Europe.
  • The work of the RAF was reviewed by Sir Kingsley Wood in the House of Commons. He announced that there would soon be 100 per cent increase in production of planes.
  • London Gazette announced that two RAF officers who took part in a raid on Wilhelmshaven on September 4th had been awarded the DFC.  These were the first decorations to be made during the present war.
  • Paris reported very great activity on the par of enemy reconnaissance units between the Moselle and Saar.  There was also artillery activity on both sides.
  • Estonian Government resigned.  M Ulotos was appointed Premier, and M Piip Foreign Secretary in the new Government.
  • The Partial evacuation of certain towns in Finland, including Helsinki and Viborg, was begun.
  • Hitler opened the Winter Relief Fund campaign in Berlin.
  • Swedish steamer ‘Vistula’ was reported to have been sunk by U-boat.

Wednesday 11th October

  • Mr Hore-Belisha, Secretary for War made a statement in the House of Commons on the road of the British Army in France.
  • Paris reported heavier Nazi attacks n French outposts.  Artillery duels of extreme violence continued.
  • Soviet-Lithuanian pact signed in Moscow.  Vilna was restored to Lithuania in exchange for the right to establish Soviet garrisons at any point on Lithuanian soil.
  • M. Paasikivi, Finnish envoy, arrived in Moscow.
  • In all big towns in Finland machine-guns and anti-aircraft guns were being mounted.  Voluntary evacuation continued.
  • A commercial agreement between the British and Soviet Governments was signed in London by virtue of which timber will be imported in exchange for rubber and Cornish tin.
  • Evacuations of Germans from the Baltic states in progress.
  • M August Zaleski, Foreign Minister in the new Polish Government set up in Paris arrived in London and consulted with the Prime Minister and Lord Halifax.

Thursday 12th October

  • Sharp fighting was reported from the Western Front
  • Finnish-Soviet talks opened in Moscow.  The American Ambassador in Moscow. Mr Steinhardt, expressed to M Molotov the hope that ample time would be given for these discussions.
  • That it would be impossible to Great British to accept Hitler’s proposals, since aggression cannot be the basis of peace, and no reliance could be placed upon the promises of the present German Government was declared by Mr Chamberlain in the House of Commons.
  • It was announced that the German liner ‘Cap note’ had been captured.
  • Government Bill to check war profiteering was introduced.

Friday 13th October

  • The King of Sweden invited the Danish and Norwegian sovereigns and the President of Finland to a conference in Stockholm.
  • Three German submarines sunk by British Navy; two were of the large ocean going type.
  • Paris stated that German raiding and patrol activities had diminished
  • British steamer, ‘Heronspool’ sunk by U-boat
  • Sir John Gilmour appointed Minister of shipping.
  • Ministry of Supply announced that three more munitions factories were to be built with speed.

Saturday 14th October

  • Finnish delegation left Moscow to report to the Government in Helsinki.
  • Admiralty announced that HMS Royal Oak had been sunk, presumably by a U-boat.
  • Two French steamers, ‘Louisiane’ and ‘Bretagne’ and one British ‘Lochavon’ sunk by enemy submarines.
  • Signor Bastianini, new Italian Ambassador, arrived in London.

Sunday 15th October

  • Paris reported that French reconnaissance units were active on the whole front. There was some reciprocal activity west of Saarlouis.
  • The French Command also stated that there were indications that strong concentrations of German forces were massing behind enemy lines
  • The Admiralty issued lists of 414 survivors of HMS Royal Oak.
  • German-Estonian agreement for transfer of German minority in Estonia was signed at Tallinn.
  • Polish Minister in Kauna protested to the Lithuanian Government against the incorporation of Vilna in Lithuania on the grounds that Russia had no right to dispose of this territory.
  • It was reported that typhoid and cholera had broken out in Warsaw.
  • The first exchanges took place of British consular officials detained in Germany against German officials still in Britain.
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2 Responses to War Diary October 9th to 15th, 1939

  1. Pingback: War Diary October 16th to 22nd, 1939 | WW2 Memories & History

  2. Pingback: War Diary October 23rd to 29th 1939 | WW2 Memories & History

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